Magnesium alloy WE43 plates as a potential candidate for mandibular fracture fixation

Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology|Biomechanics, 10 February 2022

https://doi.org/10.3389/fbioe.2021.803103

In Silico Biomechanical Evaluation of WE43 Magnesium Plates for Mandibular Fracture Fixation

Vincenzo Orassi, Heilwig Fischer, Georg N. Duda, Sara Checa, Carsten Rendenbach, Max Heiland

The use of titanium to fix mandibular fractures presents several drawbacks, such as the need for a second surgery to remove the plate afterwards or misrepresentations of tissue structures produced by different imaging techniques (imaging artifacts). Recently, magnesium WE43 alloys have drawn attention as a possible new material to treat mandibular fractures due to their biodegradability, radiopacity, their ability to induce bone regeneration, and relatively high mechanical resistance.

In this in silico biomechanical study, the performance of biodegradable magnesium WE43 alloys in comparison to both traditional titanium and biodegradable PLA devices, in four different mandibular fracture scenarios, has been investigated. The researchers found that the biomechanical conditions induced at the healing region by magnesium fixation seem to be comparable to clinically used titanium, thus magnesium WE43 alloys might be a valid alternative to titanium in mandibular fracture fixation. However, more research will be needed to better understand if magnesium WE43 fixation systems can indeed support bone healing in mandibular fractures.

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